Her fight with Rosie O’Donnell may have occurred over seven years ago, but former The View panelist, Elisabeth Hasselbeck obviously still has a bone to pick with her former co-host. Earlier this week, insiders confirmed that O’Donnell was set to return to the ABC morning talk show after current panelists, Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy, depart in August. Hasselbeck herself left the show in July of 2013 and subsequently replaced Gretchen Carlson on Fox & Friends.
It was on the Wednesday morning telecast of Fox & Friends that, Hasselbeck, 37, sounded off on the decision and shared some not-so-happy feelings regarding the about-face of O’Donnell’s decision to return to The View. Although she was on vacation, Hasselbeck found the time to call into the show and give her thoughts.
“Here in comes to The View the very woman who spit in the face of our military, spit in the face of her own network, and, really, in the face of a person who stood by her,” she said.
According to Hasselbeck, O’Donnell’s return seemed imminent to her since May of 2014. It was then when she, O’Donnell and every former co-host of The View’s past and present, returned to the morning show in order to properly send off the show’s creator, legendary journalist Barbara Walters. During a private moment, O’Donnell, 52, allegedly told her that she was the one who planned the huge goodbye celebration.
“She walked around with a lot of control [that day],” Hasselbeck stated. “Rosie herself told me, on-set while we were mic’d up, that she produced the reunion show to have everybody together; that it was her idea.”
She also insinuated that the production of the send-off was nothing more than a part of the plan for O’Donnell to return.
“It was actually her ‘hello’ show,” Hasselbeck claims.
The bad blood between the two originally stems from an episode of The View that aired back in 2007. O’Donnell had commented on the casualties on the Iraq War, bothering the conservative views of Hasselbeck. What started out as a political argument would quickly turn personal and last for a long stretch of uninterrupted minutes. According to O’Donnell, she wanted to leave the show that day; not because of the argument itself, but due to feeling as if she had been goaded into an attack against what she considered the “innocent, pure Christian Elisabeth.”
“I felt there was a little bit of a setup involved in egging me into that position,” she said to Oprah Winfrey, back in 2010, adding that producers of The View had known beforehand to ready a split screen for such an instance.
“I didn’t want to argue for a living,” she expressed. She would end up leaving three week’s shy of her actual departure date.
O’Donnell has apologized many times to Hasselbeck publicly and privately, which makes Hasselbeck’s harsh comments all the more surprising. Currently, Whoopi Goldberg, the moderator at The View, is the only one left standing after the upcoming departures of Shepherd and McCarthy. Hasselbeck feels that Goldberg and O’Donnell will clash, considering they both have very strong personalities.
“[Goldberg is] the leader on that show,” she explained, adding that it would not “be wise for Rosie O’Donnell to challenge Whoopi Goldberg on anything.”
By Jonathan Brown